What's different about Sunday brunch at a fancy steakhouse? Well here's the story.
We have done a lot of brunch goin' in this blog. Hotels, restaurants, buffets, night-time... but we hadn't been to a Steakhouse brunch. Now, L.G. Smith's Steak & Chop House reigns supreme currently in the top 5 restaurants in Oranjestad, Aruba according to Tripadvisor reviews, and is the only steakhouse from that top 5. That must mean something!
To those unfamiliar with the place, it is located at the Renaissance Wind Creek Aruba Resort, on the second floor of the Renaissance Mall, overlooking the harbor and the L.G. Smith Boulevard. It is a prime location like no other downtown, with the most entertaining view from their tables. But the view isn't anything if the product is not up to par. L.G. Smith's in my past visits has been truly phenomenal so as far as my experience has been, I have nothing but high words to say.
Brunches can be detrimental to a restaurant. High volume and a thousand orders going in the kitchen at once while patrons drink sparkling wine at terrifying speeds, sounds like a nightmare to most restaurant people. That's why some restaurants do brunches only for special occasions. This time L.G. Smith's geared up for Mother's Day.
The ambiance at L.G. Smith's is modern, vibrant, edgy, artsy, and above all high-end. Red and black colors, along with wooden columns and beams. A fantastic bar separated from the dining area and the coolest tunnel-like entrance really takes your mind into it. They also have two private dining areas that are truly fancy if that is your vibe.
The Brunch Experience.
Now, once you get to L.G. Smith's and sit you're presented with the menu, a glass of sparkling wine, and a tiny fruit salad to open your appetite. The little basil strings really added a touch.
The menu is short but substantial. I have stated before that I am not a fan of extensive menus, I mean, who could make up their mind with 30 dishes? and then leave feeling that poor choices were made or missing out cause there was no time to taste it all.
11 dishes and 4 desserts. This is a brunch à la carte and you get to order one dish per round. So, with no time to waste, let's dive into the food.
I usually prefer to have a breakfast-like item to start but given the fact that this menu did not have any waffles or similar, I decided I was gonna go right into the good stuff so I ordered the Short Rib.
It came with a tiny poached egg (I assumed It was quail) and Hollandaise sauce on top. The short rib, tender, and pully-aparty was phenomenal and the side potatoes ohhhh... so good. When you come to think about the engineering of this dish, it's so good they include the egg, the potatoes, the hollandaise, and the beef. It's almost like: "hey this is how we do breakfast at L.G. Smith's Steak & Chop House" and I am here for it.
That's the Pork Belly. So much going on in a good way. And so much beauty. Purple rice that I didn't even know existed, chives, goat cheese, quail soft-boiled egg, onion jam... if that description alone didn't make you interested I don't know what will.
The classic Bao Bun with fried chicken, sriracha mayo, and pickled cucumber can't go wrong. That is all.
I just wanted to make a parenthesis to extend my biggest gratitude to whoever came up with the idea to put the bottle in a standing bucket (and a great-looking one) next to the table. Taking the task out of the servers who actually poured immeasurable of the drinks themselves to us but also letting us take the reigns of the situation is so nice and something I've never seen before. It's bottomless, just leave the bottle in close proximity and we'll be the happiest.
Full disclosure, I don't know if that is part of the usual experience but it felt really special that day.
This is Tiradito de Wahoo with rocoto (red pepper) sauce, avocado, and puffed rice. Good for a change. Lately, everyone has a ceviche on the menu and I think these generous slices of fresh fish take things to a next level.
Whoever is a fan of Scallops would love these. Seared to perfection, pumpkin purée, a touch of garlic, and red cabbage sauce.
The creamiest tuna tartare that has ever been.
Corvina is one of my favorite fish and this dish executed it so well, then again differently with a wheat Saffron bulgur, coconut bisque, and a cherry tomato confit. Talk about a warm palette.
Of course, you come to a Steakhouse for the Steak. This one was just butter to a hot knife. Truffled polenta below (we need to see more polenta on menus!) and some classic red wine reduction. Truly the star of the show and my top pick from the menu.
Both desserts (chocolate sorbet and tart) were to the point and delicious. For the sorbet, anything that is chocolate mixed with orange will be a winner.
So what have we learned? The brunch at L.G. Smith's Steak & Chop House is a brunch for grown-ups, for foodies without being pretentious or intimidating, and the value is more than justified with all you can have. The menu can be short for some but the quality of every single dish is top tier. The all-indoor dining area will spare you from the heat and the modern, elegant vibe is the perfect opportunity to dress up and spend a different Sunday overlooking the Oranjestad harbor.
I have been tipped that Father's Day Brunch is the next one coming so call, make your reservation and tell them you read it here first!
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